Thursday, December 31, 2009


I finally found the perfect pillows for my living room, and they actually are part of a set with the throw I found at Marshalls several months ago!

From the beginning, I first spotted this throw in the fall last year at Marshalls. The price? $50.00. Obviously I didn't grab it lol.

Then several months later, I again saw it at Marshalls, but for only $10.00! Of course I couldn't say no to that amazing price....

Then just last month I made my quarterly trip to Marshalls, Ross, and Target just for some fun window shopping. After hitting up Marshalls, I headed to Ross and was meandering down the pillow aisle when alas, there it was. One velvet ivory pillow staring back at me with glimmers of shine catching the light on the beading. I was so excited, but afraid there would only be one. (It is Ross after all...) But no, I found exactly two!

And the price? $6.49 for each!!! I cannot believe. All good things go to those who wait... Such a good example to me of how biding my time and refusing to pay too much for something, or purchasing an item I do not love just for convenience sake, is definitely worth it. I not only love these, but the price could not be beat! Yay!

This is my wingback chair I found for $20.00 at Antique Things on my way to my parents house between Austin and Dripping Springs TX, but the slipcover was $60.00 from

Then this espresso brown faux fur throw I had from a few years back I use since my cat likes to jump up there... and it ties in the brown furniture.

Overall living room photos coming soon, after the christmas decor is safely tucked away! :)

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

My Bedroom

Now that I finally purchased a lamp (that's right Maria hehe, I found mine at Marshalls right before christmas!) for my bedroom, I feel like everything is set up almost adequately enough for a blog. Here it is!!
I of course made the headboard, and the bedset was one of the first things I purchased moving into my new place back in the summer.

To the left is my wall length closet which I covered with sheer black curtains instead of the gold framed mirrored doors there previously.

And of course on the right are my patio doors! I would love to find a great hook to keep the curtain covering the glass door open but all in good time.

And of course, my new lamp!! I bought both the lamp base and the shade for $30.00, and its pretty much exactly what I wanted. I am thinking about using the same thick black velvet ribbon to create a border near the bottom of the shade, but with a large double bow not centered on one side of the shade for some interest... I haven't convinced myself it would be better though.

And its the foot of my bed!

I don't have enough room for a bench or couch but meh. I needed a place to store some extra shoes (all my heels are behind my door on a rack), my project supplies, and other things so this worked perfectly. I simply bought two bookcases from walmart, fabriced the back, and threw everyting onto them.

Don't you love these containers though??! I found them at Target early this year and ended up buying them half off online much later. They have been perfect for my fabric, yarn, and other supples.

Now I just need a great chandelier instead of the fan... one more framed black and white photo to create a threesome above my bed, to hang the headboard, maybe a black faux fur throw, and some kicknacks thrown in!

The Upholstered Headboard

Even though I finished this project quite awhile ago... I am finally posting it hehe!

I have always wanted an upholstered headboard, but finding one just right with the right price was always a difficult process. Finally, I decided to just make my own! I like the final product, but am still working on perfecting two elements... I placed the fabric too tightly across the plywood so that in order to pull the buttons deeply into the fabric, I now need a different mechanism other than simply tying a knot behind the board to keep them in place. Right now they do not have the look eventually that they will.

Also, I don't really like how the fabric shows wrinkles and dips, and I am not sure if it is the material and my technique or just one of them. I decided that in the end it was ok though... because its too late to fix lol.

Because my bedroom colors are white (I refuse to paint here lol), blue (my bedset), silver, and black, I wanted to tie in the headboard to the bed with white and to all my curtains with black. Hence the birth of the ribbon idea.

The fabric I used is white satin and the ribbon includes black velvet, black eyelet lace, and then the white sequined lace. The buttons were going to be tufted with satin, but I could not resist these beauties at Hobby Lobby. I have so many more left as well just in case I decide to add more tufting!

Time involved: 4 hours of labor

Cost: $220.00

Itemized list:

1. Plywood cut to size- $12.00
2. Fabric- $15.00
3. Batting- $150.00
4. Ribbon- $12.00
5. Buttons- $15.00
6. Spray adhesive- $3.00
7. Staple gun- $7.00
8. Upholstery needles- $8.00
9. String or Wire
10. Measuring tape
11. Nails and a hammer (instead of an electric driller)

In order to complete this project, I advise purchasing a driller. Nothing is more frustrating than having to use a nail and hammer to create all the holes necessary for the buttons!

Also, to save cost, instead of leaning the headboard on the floor against the wall, you can purchase special hooks made for heavy items and hang it above your bed. This can cut off about two feet of height or make more of a statement in your bedroom. I plan on doing this in the future, when I get the motivation to accomplish this task by myself...

If you have questions about the process, just ask!

My Christmas Dinner Contribution

I know, I know. I don't like cooking.

But for other people, or really mainly events... I find it very rewarding. This christmas I wanted to make something for our dinner (partly because you never know what you will end up eating that day) and decided on Creamed Corn with my own twist.

There have been two recipes that I love, and I ended up combining both for the holiday party at the office, which everyone happily gobbled up, and then again for christmas at home.

I was very happy with the success and this will definitely be one of my staples for any gathering. Unless its a healthy gathering hehe...

The ingredients are as follows:

1. 1 large bag Frozen corn (canned works also, but be sure to drain very well!)
2. 1 pkg cream cheese
3. 1-2 cups half n half or heavy cream
4. 4 tbsp butter
5. 1-2 tbsp minced garlic
6. 1-2 tbsp Parsley
7. 1-2 tbsp Thyme
8. 1 tbsp Red pepper flakes
9. Salt n Pepper


If you use frozen corn, thaw the corn prior to cooking to prevent curdling of the cream cheese. Warm a large saucepan or pot to medium heat, and heat the garlic, butter, and cream cheese together until the cream cheese is mostly melted. Be sure to keep stirring to prevent any burning! Pour in the corn and stir for 2-3 mins. Add the heavy cream to the mixture and continue to stir to melt the remaining cream cheese. Add in the spices together to taste. I like a little bite to my food, so feel free to kick it up a notch with the pepper or skip it entirely.

This recipe was of course, not by the book, as I rarely cook with instructions but rather focus on the ingredients themselves. Hence, my expected lack luster zeal for baking.

Eat and Enjoy!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Sherlock Holmes

So I think a large part of the reason I really enjoyed this movie is based on two factors.

1. Robert Downy Junior. In his most recent movies with his sober acting, I think his talent has been able to shine forth much more strongly than before and have loved watching him develop his characters.

2. The visible relation to House was so strong it was great fun analyzing the the differences and similarities! Holmes and Watson versus House and Wilson... for example? The interplay of their relationship was almost identical! If only House had stayed true to the detective work of medicine rather than focusing on the drama. :(

And of course the time frame was wonderful!! I absolutely love the costume design and this gave me great inspiration for my wedding... lots to think about hehe. Bustles and top hats oh my!!! I already knew I wanted a great bustle for my dress, but maybe vests for the men...?

Friday, December 25, 2009

Little King's Story


So my second Wii game to play, but my very first to own!

The critters are pretty cute which is fun, and the basic premise it to build your little town into a city, keep your peeps happy, and upgrade them to different jobs to further your world domination.

Pretty popular concept, and well constructed in this game. I wouldn't give it a 10, but I think I rate this... a 7 on my interest level.

I still do not have animal crossing, but that will be next on the list for sure now that I have the means to play it with.

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince

Ok. I know this is more than one full year after the theater release date of this film, but I only just now saw this movie.

Wonderful! There were definitely a few parts that veered away from the book word for word, but nothing too serious in my mind.

The musical score was actually really enjoyable and I definitely kept noticing it during various scenes. Normally I do not, except, of course, for Lord of the Rings. Even though it was, again, darker than the previous, I don't think it betrayed the nature of the novel.

Draco Malfoy's character was given more depth at this point in the story, and the actor's portrayal highlighted this well I believe. Brava!

Now all there is left to do, is wait for the next two films depicting the final and last book! I hope J. K. Rowling feels inspired to write more, either of this world but of new characters and plot (my personal hope) or even expanding on these characters futures as adults in the wizarding world.

Horrah for Harry Potter!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Wimberly TX

Yet another little town that is fun to wander about!

I visited this place (near Austin) last winter, and there are a few differences from Fredericksburg but still somewhat similar.

1. The town is centered more around the square rather than one long street, so that walking around visiting several stores is much easier.

2. There are no antique mall stores persey, rather little boutiques instead with antiques in them. I found a great little hat with netting that actually covered my whole face! Every one I find seems to barely even reach an eyebrow let alone my nose hehe.

3. There are also several art galleries scattered about which are always interesting to scavenge through. These two little critters I found in a store full of fun painted signs and other art pieces.

We actually didn't need to stop and eat anything (although there is a great italian restaurant right at the square) because so many of the shops have crackers and pretzels with local dips. We ended up purchasing a couple bags of seasoning for dips cause they were so yummy! Because of the christmas season, they also had hot cider and wasale too! One new store call Taste Buds, which you can definitely smell at the square, is entirely devoted to barbecue sauses, salsas, dips, mustards, honey butters, and chocolates. The mexican spiced hot chocolate was my fav by far! Mmmmmm.

After eating all those yummy saltly crackers with dip, I had to get something to drink.... yay for Coca Cola in a bottle woot!

One of the stores had a huge display of jeweled picture frames and reminded me of my mantle display! I would have loved to pic up another for my collection, buuuut alas for money. Definitely not a priority as hobby lobby always has a stock.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

The Original Half-Price Bookstore

We have all seen them. Those little corner bookstores scattered about haphazardly struggling for survival against the universally accepted Barnes and Nobles. Usually situated in some random strip mall with hardly enough advertising to make the bank, they remind me of one of my favorite movies, You've Got Mail.

Here in Dallas though, we have the one and only original Half Price Bookstore, located in a popular area with a sign you can literally visualize across several streets.

Rather than a strip mall, this store fills an entire warehouse and even has its own Black Forest Cafe. Besides the coffee, I love the low prices and huge variety of books available for browsing.

Black Forest Cafe has pretty much amazing sandwiches and pastries, so if you end up lost within the book shelves long enough to hear your stomach protesting, all is not lost!

For those of us you can't seem to limit our selections, they of course provide baskets for further encouragement. I always end up skimming through my original pickings and narrowing my ultimate purchases to within reason though. I only left with one book today!

My favorite section, if anyone guessed... is the SciFi/Fantasy section of course! They always have a great selection of hard cover as well as paperback.

At the corner next door, is everyone's must have coffee shop with drive thru. I tend to favor their coffee over Black Forest Cafe, picking up a white mocha from here first and then browsing the bookstore followed by a quick lunch at the cafe is pretty much the norm for my schedule.

Right across the street is my dream apartment complex... Imagine getting up in the morning and being able to trot over the the hugest bookstore ever, grab your morning coffee, and snuggle up with a new book!
Apparently that luxury is not particular to me, as the rental prices for a unit here top more than a grand per month.... It somewhat reminds me of Seattle.

Winter Garden Shopping

Even though there are still a few weeks left until I plan on contemplating my patio garden plans again, I did visit the plant nursery next to the hospital again recently. Oh what fun!

These are a few of the styles they are growing rosemary bushes now. Obviously in the christmas theme... but I like them for any season! Aren't the shapes super cute?

I still am not sure if I want to have one window plant ledge for my patio with herbs and such, including rosemary. I need to research which herbs can grow well in the same soil and condition so that all of them prosper in the same pot. Cilantro would be great but I'm not sure it will actually grow with the other herbs... but it sure is yummy.

These were a few of the flowers that I unexpectly found and really loved. Alyssum is one I am a bit familiar with and seems to favor the conditions of Dallas and my morning sunshine filled patio. Very basic but it might look good with a couple of other flowers in a pot.

These flowers were so gorgeous all bunched together. The color just hits you all at once! It was more of a fuschia than red, but both look beautiful. Not sure if I want to go with such a strong color palette though. They do grow in other colors so I might check out those instead. I am looking for more of the soft blues and purples and whites really.

Aren't these fresh and cute as well?

Of course they are again in the red hot family of color, but I do know these come in varying colors. I can't wait to hunt for my potted plants this coming April!! So much fun!

Classic Poetry

While rummaging around several of the antique stores in Fredericksburg, I came across one in particular that had a whole section of old published books. These two I found and simply couldn't leave behind...

The Victorian Age is a collection of acclaimed or influential British authors from that time period, with an introduction outlining the political views, industrial development, agriculture, and social change occuring at the time of these writers. This extra bonus feature really sold this book for me. Being able to appreciate poets like Robert Browning is one thing, but understanding the issues of the time period and the background of each writer opens huge windows into each piece!

This other poem collection is specific to Walt Whitman and is his famous Leaves of Grass. Besides the fact that I love him anyways, the detail of the book was so great that it outweighed the poor condition to me.

This embossed lettering is so rare a find!

I hunted for something of T. S. Eliott's but never found anything... there is always next time though!

I plan on adding slowly to my little collection until they are literally falling off the side of my TV stand lol. Isn't it ironic that I ended up placing one form of entertainment next to one so utterly different? I think it brings a softer hue to the cold temperament of technology. Maybe lol.

Venetian Mask Display

Through some odd fluke, about one year ago I began developing a collector's passion for venetian masks. I believe the origins of this arose from my love of Ever After, and ever since Masquerade Balls and British Court intrigue have filled me with fancy.

I have hit up Earthbound, Marshalls, and even Ebay for my display. I have kept the ones in my living room within a suitable color scheme of gold, white, red, and brown and placed my other two silver and black masks in my bedroom.

The shelving system I thought up to bring out the white crown molding and to offset all the espresso brown furniture.

I really just love all the glitter! :)

This little fairy critter I was given a few years ago and he has grown on me ever since. He has other trapped friends but I have yet to find them in the wide world. The hunt is on though!

This is how it all looks in the setting of my living room.

I think in the end, it may not be your typical interior design dream, but its definitely me and thats how I wanted my home to feel.

One project down!

Ren Fest Art

Yay!!! I finally am satisfied with the art in my living room. Le sigh. Finalement!

Its been quite a tough struggle searching for just the right piece(s) for behind my couch as I knew I needed something more vertical shaped to counter the long horizontal entrance mirror to the right of my couch even though I would have liked to align several pictures in that way.

These are the post cards from Ren Fest that I framed and hung.

I set the two Spring and Winter ones above next to each other and then placed these others below. My favorite and the one that caught my eye originally is the profile vignette. I just love how they each have that framed look, and all are done in more of a dark green and brown color. It definitely fits the colors of my living room for sure.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Pin Up Style

Even though I am currently living on a not so glamorous budget, and my priorities have basically destroyed any clothing shopping for several months now, I still enjoy window shopping! The new fascination with the 40s and 50s style incorporated into current trends piqued my interest completely and inspired this entry. The usual pin up style I of course, find sexy, but a pit over the top for every day wear for me.

If I had the curvy body type *coughmariacough* to pull something like this off... you bet I wouldn't hesitate! I would still like to incorporate certain elements of this though into my fashion... looking forward to my next spree so much!
This one on the left is definitely super sexy, but I think would be perfect for a dinner date!! Love the halter neck line and fun polka dots.

I absolutely crave this next one's subtle nautical theme! Instead of throwing anchors over a long sleeved white shirt like I have seen all too often, this carnival striped puffy skirt is soo fun!!! And the pockets! The pockets!! Eeeep hehe!

Those shoes are pretty much to die for (I love when they have that ankle bracelet clasp) and with the bright skirt and boyish denim jacket, its a perfect combo. I can't think of anything more perfect to wear for a fun night out. This is probably the most flirty out of them all.

Now for a more subdued and classic look, this simple dark dress paired with stockings that are so popular right now (and so functional in this weather!), the vintage cap hat that I have seen in almost all the antique malls but haven't snatched up, and the little ankle boots that I have also seen versions of in the shoe stores recently. I am so glad fashion has passed over the horrible 70s and 80s finally and returned to the more flattering styles of the 40s and 50s. I hope some of those elements stick with us in the future...

This outfit would be something to wear out during the day for errands or probably a day rambling about on my own I think. Or maybe on one of my many bus trips as suggested in the photo... I can bring Bowser along hehe.

These next two are ones that are most easily created shopping in current stores like Forever XXI, Charlotte Rousse, and any mall. These skirts are pretty much flattering on any human being lol, unless you are one stuck with more of a disproportionate midsection.

I think it takes confidence and attitude to really pull these off, but so much fun as well! Perfect for a late night date, or an evening out solo.

Finalement, a perfect look for your typical grinding day at the office or simply for achieving a more professional appearance with that splash of attitude. I think the pale blonde hair does it in this one... but I still love the outfit. Very easy to throw together, again.
Ooooo I want to go shopping and then out on the town hehe!! All of these looks are perfect for a day out antique shopping and book browsing as well... which would be my idea of a perfect saturday!
The inspiration just smells good Mmmm! Hehehe.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Ren Fest 2009

This year at Ren Fest I was disappointed that they did not continue the yearly tradition of creating a plot and theme. Instead they decided to create themes for each weekend. I really loved the year they did Queen Maeb and the trolls... the fairy princess was kidnapped by the troll prince for political reasons. Ah the intrigue!!! Sadly there were no plays this year to enjoy, but the christmas decorations were fun.
P.S. The cameras that I used were the disposable, and they stink.

This was at the entrance while all the actors were arguing about whatnot and the rest of us were just impatiently waiting for them to let us all stampede the place.

These were the chapels and gardens where people sometimes get married. I definitely would never do that... because who wants a bunch of strangers all up in your special day? But I do love how all the ivy completely covers this building!!!

I always love people watching and enjoying the creativity of their costumes. This was by far my favorite, even though it is completely the wrong era historically!!! But my favorite so ah well lol. A Victorian festival would probably not be the most fun... Im good on needle point thank you very much.

This creature is an Ent!!! I was so excited to find one I just had to run up to him!!! If only there were more wandering around...
I was also surprised to find several venetian mask stands scattered about the grounds. Surprised and happy! I ended up not indulging though (yay for discipline!) as I am happy with my collection right now and really wanted to concentrate on finding some wall art for behind my lovely green barrel tufted couch.

A few of the shops I found wandering about included this one by an artist. I actually stayed here for about half an hour rummaging through all the different prints trying to decide which piece to purchase. I ended up buying 6 different 4 x 6 post cards at a great price, and then went home and placed them each in matted 8 x 10 espresso stained wood frames. I hung 4 of them up above the couch arrayed in a vertical rectanglur pattern. As soon as they were hung I felt so satisfied!! I definitely chose the perfect collection... they each are sort of vignettes of fairies and are all in the green and brown, forest color range. I love them! And the shop was just such fun.
These are some of the abundant food shops lining the entire festival. My mom had to indulge in the kettle korn, and I had some of that in the morning, followed by my turkey sandwhich I had packed for lunch (yay for being thrifty!!). I didn't get the beef jerkey that I so love this time, but now that I am older I realize that there is always next year!! :P I am so getting a sausage on a stick then too!

We also got to get lost in the labyrinth again!! I wish they had a real hedge maze... but I guess that it too much to ask... Ah well. This was just as fun! Once you reach the center you ring the large bell, and then climb up the stairs to overlook the entire expanse. This is just one section of it.

These little critters were creatures I found in one of the many little shops. Again, so cute!